Thursday, 14 May 2015

working with Glendale 30th April 2015

It was a sunny and warm day on Thursday 30th April 2015. Glendale grounds staff and managers joined Friends of Mayow Park (FOMP) to do some serious work in the Triangle and their efforts are greatly appreciated. Glendale previously helped FOMP in February 2014 and I think we were all relieved that today was a warm and sunny day.

At the start of the session our targets were:
  • to remove as much bindweed as we could in the herb bed
  • clear the woody green waste beside the compost bins
  • bed in new wooden sitting logs for children beside the mini wild flower area
  • bed in new logs for the windy path
  • lay more wood chip on the windy path going past the dawn redwood tree
In the bushes behind our black compost bins was a large pile of green waste, mainly twiggy plants that have been removed from the Triangle beds over the past two years and were too woody to go into our bins. Thanks to Glendale, this unsightly pile (and potential fire hazard) has been removed, taken away to be shredded and turned into compost.

woody plant waste removed
tidying up the compost area

last of the plant waste going on the van
Weeding the herb bed is an on-going task as the soil has plenty of bindweed. Volunteers from Friends of Mayow Park concentrated on weeding out as much bindweed as we could. There is plenty more! If anyone passes by with a trowel and sees bindweed strangling the herbs and strawberries, you are welcome to have a go at digging it up and throwing the weeds in the rubbish bins rather than the compost where it is unlikely rot down completely.

Volunteers weeding among the herbs
A volunteer lost among the herbs!
Some hard physical work by Glendale saw the removal of the rotting log seating and replacement with new logs. This is a space where small groups of little children can gather  or families can sit to have picnics and relax. Luckily, Glendale staff brought bow saws and strong digging implements to complete this task.
new log seating installed and looking great
Another major task was to bed in logs along the windy path and to lay more woodchip. This path and log edging were originally installed by Nature's Gym volunteers. Over the past three years or so some logs have disappeared and the path was looking untidy. It is MUCH better now.

The fruit bushes in the Triangle were not forgotten and received a layer of mulch to help them retain moisture during the summer months.

Darren mulches fruit bushes. At the back  people work on the woodchip path
We stopped for a well-deserved break of tea and biscuits and then back to work to finish as much as possible. Much was achieved by ten people working together as part of a team. The photo below shows only eight people as some are camera-shy.
Our park keeper Ainsley joined in and  it was great for him to work with other grounds staff as a park keeper's job can be lonely at times. The Glendale managers also enjoyed doing some heavy physical work working alongside grounds staff.

From the Friends of Mayow Park volunteers, we say thank you to those from Glendale who came to work with us and made an effort to improve the Triangle. It was a session where so much was achieved.  The space looks much better as a result.

Sunday, 12 April 2015

Litter and dog fouling

As the park gets busier over the coming months, we can expect to find more litter and dog fouling. Most of the dog walkers in Mayow Park are very careful to pick up after them but not all. Our new park keeper is only in the park on two days a week and he does not yet know the 'grot spots' where litter accumulates, particularly where drinkers and smokers congregate. I hope that regular park users will help him out by letting him know of any specific dog mess and litter. After another week or two he should be more familiar with the park and better able to go straight to the problem areas.
Two of our dog walkers have offered to collect litter and dog mess as they walk round the park, which is very considerate of them. I would like to check with Glendale about health and safety implications plus provision of litter sticks, gloves and rubbish bags.
The following photos are not a pretty sight, showing litter and dog fouling which remained for several days.


Bird walk 12th April 2015

At 8am on a sunny Sunday 12th April 2015 eleven people gathered for a bird walk round Mayow Park. Our last bird walk in March was a cold and miserable day with few birds but today was much better,  good visibility and plenty of bird song to guide us. The trees are not yet in full leaf, making it easier to spot the birds. Many thanks to Paul Barrett for leading the walk.
Here is a list of birds we saw:
  • hedge sparrow/ dunnock (a pair) 
  • great spotted woodpecker on tree near tennis court)
  • parakeets
  • magpies
  • song thrush
  • wren (pair)
  • great tit
  • blue tits (particularly in and around the cherry tree in bloom by the rose beds near the Silverdale entrance)
  • long tail tits (pair)
  •  robins
  • starlings
  • wood pigeons
  • stock doves
  • chaffinch male (two in different places)
  • blackbirds (pair)
  • jay (pair)
  • crow
  • herring gulls (flying overhead)
  • mistle thrush
  • nuthatch (pair) in rockery area in front of bowls site
These photos show some of the trees where birds were present though the camera did not get to shoot them. The third photo shows  two parakeets at a hole where they are nesting.
we saw birds in these two oaks

Plenty of blue tits in this blossoming cherry tree near rose beds

Can you see the parakeets half way up the right hand trunk?

male chaffinch somewhere in this tree

Wednesday, 25 March 2015

equipment official opening 25th March 2015


Local councillors, Lewisham Greenscene officers and Glendale officers attended the official opening of the gym facilities in the park, which had been provided and installed by HAG-SMP.
Cllrs Best and Onikosi spoke about the value of this equipment as a way of developing personal health and how it would enhance the park experience. They thanked the officers who had been involved in bidding for funds and choosing the equipment and they cut the ribbon. Martin from HAG-SMP was on hand as was personal trainer Michael (in orange jacket). Michael was able to show people how to get the best from the equipment.

Park users also joined in and had a go on the equipment. As a reward they got a bottle of water and an energy bar

Saturday, 21 March 2015

Official opening Outdoor Gym 25th March 2015

Come along to this event and learn how to get the best use from the Mayow Park outdoor gym and trim trail.

Nature's Gym work session 14 March 2015

All busy working
Nature's Gym and Mayow Park volunteers had an enjoyable few hours working on the Triangle. Some younger volunteers came to help with seed-sowing, watched over by their parents. The edges of the beds were tidied up so that Glendale grounds staff would be able to strim the grass verges on their next visit.
Great team work    

When we finished, everything looked much better. The children will water their seeds and we look forward to seeing what grows.

Hedgerow trimmed

 Nature's Gym also added more woodchip to the paths and trimmed the hedgerow.
Thank you to Nature's Gym people

Thursday, 12 March 2015


There are some great volunteers helping out in our park. 
Some  have  been keen to help our gardening efforts in the Triangle beds. 
1. Our mini wildflower meadow has been planted and maintained by one mum with a young child. She started looking after the patch last summer and can only come to the park from time to time. 
It is disappointing that the wildflower area has also recently been trampled and we wait to see if all the lovely seedlings that were starting to grow will survive.

2. Last October another volunteer noticed that people were walking over the herb bed and trampling  plants so  he installed two very low hurdles using bamboo canes and sticks, in an effort to encourage people to stay on the paths.   The hurdles lasted from October 2014 to March 2015.One hurdle was broken a few weeks ago.  
one damaged cane hurdle

This week the second was completely removed by a person unknown. 
There was a hurdle here . . . but now it has gone!

Fortunately another volunteer replaced the missing hurdle and repaired the other. That part of the plant bed has been trampled a lot and plants find it difficult to grow there.
broken hurdle repaired with a stick and string

new hurdle in place
3. In January 2015 another regular park user offered to make small postcard-sized signs to explain to people that volunteers look after the beds. Some of these are now in place. 
one of the signs made by a volunteer
 Do please help to care for this area and help it to improve. Join us for our session with Nature's Gym this coming Saturday 14th March from 11am to 2pm